Fujifilm Unveils Instax Mini 11 Instant Camera with Auto Exposure, Macro Mode and More

Fujifilm has just announced the Instax Mini 11 instant camera: a follow-up to the popular Instax Mini 9 that adds some much-requested features like auto exposure, an updated design, and even a Macro Mode.

Like the Instax Mini 9 before it, the Instax Mini 11 shoots (what else) Instax Mini instant film and uses the same 2 element 60mm lens. But it’s not just a spiritual successor with a new number on the label, Fuji has added some useful features as well.

The body of the Mini 11 has been redesigned to be “rounder” and more “modern,” which also makes it a tiny bit slimmer. There’s still a selfie mirror on the end of the lens, but now there’s also a selfie “Mode” that you activate by simply pulling out the front of the lens barrel until you see the Selfie Mode mark. This feature doubles as a Macro Mode by dropping the minimum focus distance to just 0.3m without the need to add a lens attachment.

Fuji has also added Auto Exposure to the Mini 11, which now automatically sets shutter speed and flash output based on the level of ambient light instead of relying on a rudimentary dial like the Mini 9.

The Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 will be available in 5 colors—Sky Blue, Lilac Purple, Ice White, Charcoal Gray, and Blush Pink—and comes with two different shutter button “accessories” (glow in the dark and jewel-like) for customization. It’ll be available starting mid-March for $70.

Finally, Fujifilm also announced two new varieties of Instax film tonight: Instax Mini Blue Marble and Instax Square White Marble. Both feature “marble-patterned print frames” and should sell for the same $12 per twin-pack of 10 exposures each (20 total).

To learn more about this camera or the new Instax film, head over to the Fujifilm website.

Tilta Camera Cage for Sony PXW-FX9

Tilta introduces a new Sony FX9 cage today. The cage’s top plate fits snugly around the Sony PXW-FX9 top handle and includes 15mm LWS rod adapters on the front end to allow you to easily mount the camera’s viewfinder. The Tilta Battery Plate for Sony PXW-FX9 Cage is available in either gold mount or V-mount … Continued

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Sony introduces FE 20mm F1.8 G

Sony has just announced the new FE 20mm F1.8 G lens, the widest full-frame prime lens in the E-mount line up. With a focal length of 20mm and a fast F1.8 aperture, it is ideal for photographers & videographers for various types of work. When paired with an APS-C cameras, it would be 30mm (35mm … Continued

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Bob Iger Steps Down as Disney CEO

The guard over at Disney has changed. Bob Chapek has officially been named the company’s new CEO.

After 15 years at the helm, Bob Iger has stepped down as Disney’s CEO. The Walt Disney Company made the announcement today, stating that it has named former Chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products, Bob Chapek, as its new Chief Executive Officer.

However, Iger isn’t stepping away completely—at least not yet. He will continue to serve as Disney’s Executive Chairman “direct[ing] the Company’s creative endeavors” until his contract ends on December 31st, 2021.

“With the successful launch of Disney’s direct-to-consumer businesses and the integration of Twenty-First Century Fox well underway, I believe this is the optimal time to transition to a new CEO,” Mr. Iger said in the Disney press release. “I have the utmost confidence in Bob and look forward to working closely with him over the next 22 months as he assumes this new role and delves deeper into Disney’s multifaceted global businesses and operations, while I continue to focus on the Company’s creative endeavors.”

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The Smithsonian Just Released 2.8 Million Images Into the Public Domain

The Smithsonian just made a public domain contribution that it’s calling “unprecedented in both depth and breadth.” In one fell swoop, the institution is adding over 2.8 million images to an online platform called Open Access, where you can browse and download images for free.

While other world-famous museums have digitized and released large parts of their collections into the public domain in the past, nobody has done it in such a dramatic fashion.

Open Access gives the public free and easy access to over 2.8 million 2D and 3D images from all 19 Smithsonian museums, nine research centers, libraries, archives and the National Zoo, with no restrictions on how you can use, alter, or reuse the images. The Smithsonian Magazine itself said the platform encourages users to “transform [the images] into just about anything they choose—be it a postcard, a beer koozie or a pair of bootie shorts.”

Of course, not all of the nearly 3 million images are photographs—the collection includes images of artifacts, specimens, data sets, and over 2,000 3D models including several fossils and the Apollo 11 command module—but there are thousands of photographs in the Smithsonian’s collections as well, particularly from the archives of the National Portrait Gallery.

A cursory search of the Open Access database shows over 10,000 results for “photograph.”

And this, says the Smithsonian, is only the beginning. As the institution continues to digitize more of its massive collection, approximately 200,000 more images will be added to the Open Access platform (and the public domain) in 2020.

To learn more about Open Access and this massive increase in the amount of imagery available in the Public Domain, head over to the official announcement or go browse the platform for yourself.

Image credits: Photo courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Larry J. West, CC0

Making Sony Log Cameras Behave Like Arri Cameras When Shooting Cine EI and S-Log3.

Arri have a little trick in their cameras when shooting log to ProRes that the Sony Log cameras don’t have. When you change the Exposure Index in an Arri camera they modify the position of the exposure mid point and the shape of the Log-C gamma curve. There is actually a different Log-C curve for each EI. When you take this into post it has the benefit that the brightness at each EI will appear similar. But as the curve changes for each EI a different LUT is needed for each exposure if you want something shot at say 800EI to look the same as something shot at 200EI.

With a Sony camera the same S-Log curve is used for each Exposure Index and the LUT brightness is changed so that you end up altering the mid point of the recording as well as the highlight and shadow range. In post each EI will appear to be a different brightness. You can use the same LUT for each EI provided you do an exposure correction prior to adding the LUT or you can use dedicated offset LUT’s for each exposure.

But what you need to remember is that you are always working within a restricted recording range with either system. You can’t go darker than the black recording level or brighter than the highest value the codec can record.

If you do it in camera, as Arri do and change the log curve, at a low EI you seriously constrict the recording range (at 200 EI peak only reaches around 78IRE). This happens because at a low EI you put more light on to the sensor, so to keep the mid range looking a normal brightness in post it must be recorded at a much lower level. So with all the levels now reduced you end up recording your entire capture range into a smaller recording range. In addition to avoid clipping the blacks at a low EI the shadows are rolled off so you lose some detail and textures in the shadows. You can see the different Log-C curves in this Arri White paper.

Most people choose a low EI for 2 reasons, better signal to noise ratio and improved shadow range. The Arri method gives you the better SNR but while the dynamic range is preserved it’s recorded using less data and in particular the shadow data decreases compared to shooting at the base ISO.

Shoot at a high EI, you put less light on to the sensor. So to maintain similar looking mids in post everything has to be recorded at a higher level. Now you have a problem because the highlights will extend beyond the upper limits of the recording range so  Arri have to add a highlight roll off at the top of the Log-C curve. This can present some grading challenges as the curve is now very different to regular Log-C. In addition the highlights are compressed.

Most people choose to shoot at a high EI to extend the highlight range or to work in lower light levels.

The latter is a bit of a pointless exercise with any log camera as the camera sensitivity isn’t actually any different, you are only fooling yourself into thinking it’s is more sensitive and this can result in noisy footage. If you using a high EI to extend the highlight range then really the last thing you want is the extra highlight roll off that Arri have to add at 3200 EI to fit everything in.

One thing here in Arri’s favour is that they can record 12 bit ProRes 444. 12 bits helps mitigate the compressed recording range of low EI’s provided the post workflow is managed correctly.

The beauty of the Sony method is the recording range never changes, so low EI’s and brighter recordings deliver better shadow ranges with more data in the shadows and mids and high EI’s with darker recordings deliver better highlight ranges with no additional data restrictions or additional roll-offs giving the cinematographer more control to choose the exposure mid point without compromise to the data at either end.

But it does mean that post need to be awake and that the shooter needs to communicate with post regarding the brighter/darker looking images. But to be honest if post don’t understand this and recognise what you have done either buy just looking at the footage or checking the metadata what chance is there of post actually doing a decent job of grading your content? This should be fundamental and basic stuff for a colourist/grader. For a colourist/grader to not understand this and how to work with this is like hiring a camera operator that doesn’t know what an ND filter is.

The Sony FS7/FX9/F5/F55/Venice cameras can do something similar to an Arri camera by baking in the S-Log3 LUT. Then in post the exposure will look the same at every EI. BUT you will lose some highlight range at a low EI’s and some shadow range at a high EI’s without gaining any extra range at the opposite end. As a result the total dynamic range does  reduce as you move away from the base ISO.

In addition on the Venice, FS7/F5/F55 (and I suspect in a future update the FX9) you can bake in a user LUT to the SxS recordings. If you  create a set of S-Log3 to S-Log3 LUT’s with EI offsets included in the LUT you could replicate what Arri do by having an offset and tweaked S-Log3 User LUT for each EI that you want to shoot at. You would not use the cameras EI control you would leave the camera st the base ISO. The LUT’s themselves will include the exposure offset. These will maintain the full dynamic range but just like Arri they will  need to roll off the shadows or highlights within the LUT.

But monitoring will be tricky as you won’t have the benefit of a 709 type LUT for monitoring so you you may need to use an external monitor or viewfinder that can apply a LUT to it’s image. The good news is the same LUT would be used in the monitor for every version on the offset S-Log3 LUT that you are baking in as the exposure brightness levels will be the same for each offset.

So here you are a set of 4 S-Log3/S-Gamut3.cine offset LUT’s for those Sony cameras that will take a user LUT. I have named the LUT’s – 2S Down SL3C, 1S Down SL3C,  1S UP SL3C, 2S UP SL3C.

The name means (Number of Stops) (Down or Up) (Slog3.Cine).

So if the cameras base ISO is 2000 (F5/FS7 etc) and you want to shoot at the equivalent of 1000EI, which is 1 stop down from base you would use “1S Down SL3C”.

As always (to date at least) I offer these as a free download available by clicking on the links below.  But I always appreciate a contribution if you find them useful and make use of them. I will let you pay what you feel is fair, all contributions are greatly appreciated and it really does help keep this website up and running. If you can’t afford to pay, then just download the LUT’s and enjoy using them. If in the future you should choose to use them on a paying project, please remember where you got them and come back and make a contribution. More contributions means more LUT offerings in the future.

Please feel free to share a link to this page if you wish to share these LUT’s with anyone else or anywhere else. But it’s not OK to to share or host these on other web sites etc.

Here’s the link to download my offset S-Log3 Camera LUTs

To make a contribution please use the drop down menu here, there are several contribution levels to choose from.

Your choice:

pixel Making Sony Log Cameras Behave Like Arri Cameras When Shooting Cine EI and S-Log3.

Making Sony Log Cameras Behave Like Arri Cameras When Shooting Cine EI and S-Log3. was first posted on February 25, 2020 at 9:10 pm.
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Meyer Optik Gorlitz’ Official ‘Reboot’ Planned for Photokina 2020

Formerly disgraced, purchased, and reborn optics company Meyer Optik Görlitz is planning to officially re-enter the world of photography at Photokina 2020 in May, and it’ll be bringing six redesigned lenses along for the ride.

In case you haven’t been following this saga, historic optics brand Meyer Optik Görlitz was first “brought back from the dead” in 2014 by a company called net SE. The company convinced many a photographer to part with their money through Kickstarter campaigns that didn’t all end up producing real products, and net SE eventually went bankrupt after some very embarrassing revelations.

The company’s re-rebirth began in 2018, when German company OPC Optics bought the brand from net SE during insolvency proceedings, and began the hard work of earning back the public’s trust. Now, after over a year of work, an “extensive reorganization,” and the promise that crowdfunding won’t play a role in the brand’s future, OPC Optics will be reintroducing Meyer Optik Görlitz to the world at Photokina 2020.

OPC made the announcement earlier today, and it tracks with the company’s previous promises of Meyer Optik’s imminent re-launch.

In the latest announcement, OPC Optics’ Managing Director Timo Heinze reveals that the company will have six lenses on display at the show—the Trioplan 100, Trioplan 50, Trioplan 35, Primoplan 75, Primoplan 58, and the Lydith 30—which are all in serial production and should be available “for the most part” by the time the expo starts.

“All lenses are completely developed and manufactured in Germany with the utmost care and attention to detail,” assures Heinze. “We are proud of the high-quality realization of our product developments, but even more proud of all the impressive and unique results that photographers have created so far and will create with the new versions of Meyer Optik Görlitz’s lenses.”

Visitors to Meyer Optik Görlitz’ booth will be invited to “take a closer look” at all six of the new lenses and discuss their design (or re-design) with members of the Meyer Optik team. The company is also planning a photo exhibition featuring large format prints, each captured using Meyer Optik lenses.

According to the release, each lens will be presented in a separate area with 10 large format prints, and the whole exhibition will cover a whopping 200 square meters of the show floor. Obviously OPC Optics wants the brand to make a grand re-entrance.

To learn more about the company ahead of its big reboot, head over to their website. And if you want to dive deeper into the sordid state of affairs that got us here, check out our in-depth report on Meyer Optik’s downfall, published in 2018.

How to Make a ‘Poor Man’s Process Trailer’ to Shoot Moving Car Scenes

Shooting car scenes can get really expensive (especially when that car is moving), but here’s how to do it if you’re on a budget.

Shooting in a moving car gets very expensive. You need to rent a process trailer, grab a crew, clear permits with police officers, and run the picture car over and over until you get the takes you like. That doesn’t account for traffic, gasoline, and intangibles like sirens, honking, and flubbed lines.

Okay, so in knowing all that, how do you shoot car scenes on a budget?

The simple answer is: strategy.

Check out this video from Mark Bone and let’s talk after the jump.

How to Make a ‘Poor Man’s Process Trailer’ to Shoot Car Scenes

Here at No Film School, we pride ourselves on finding budget-friendly workarounds for the everyday problems you find on most indie sets. That’s why I love the video above so much. It gave me the perfect perspective for how you can shoot a car scene that looks professional and real while working with a limited crew behind the scenes, under conditions you control, without spending in excess.

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Sony’s Xperia 1 II Smartphone Borrows Real-Time Eye AF, 20fps, and More from the Sony a9

Yesterday, Sony unveiled their latest Xperia smartphones. And while you don’t typically see Sony’s phones at the top of the smartphone photography heap with Google, Apple and Samsung, the new Xperia 1 Mark II might change all that.

For its latest flagship smartphone, Sony went all-in on camera technology, borrowing features from the speed demon Sony a9 and slapping them on the triple-camera array found on the back of the Xperia 1.

According to Sony, the phone was “co-developed with the engineers behind the latest Alpha 9 series cameras” in order to integrate features like Real Time Eye AF, Animal Eye AF, and 20fps burst shooting with full AF/AE tracking when using the main 24mm wide-angle camera. There’s also full manual control, and RAW support will be coming to the phone in a future software update.

In terms of base specs, the triple camera features three 12MP sensors behind 16mm, 24mm and 70mm ZEISS lenses complete with ZEISS’ T* coating for “exquisite rendering and contrast.” The 16mm and 24mm cameras both feature sensors with “Dual Photo Diode” autofocus, and the largest sensor of the bunch (on the 24mm camera) is a 1/1.7-inch Exmor RS for Mobile that’s 50% larger than the 1/2.6-inch sensors Sony has used in the past.

Finally, a 3D indirect Time of Flight (iToF) sensor provides better low-light focus, and the whole shebang is powered by a special Bionz X for Mobile engine that allows for up to 60 AF/AE calculations per second on the main camera, or 30 calculations per second on the 16mm and 70mm cameras.

You can see the alpha camera technology in action on Sony’s new smartphone in the demo video below:

Beyond the photo-specific specs above, the new Xperia 1 Mark II phone comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 5G processor, 8GB RAM, 256GB on-board storage, a 21:9 aspect ratio 6.5-inch 4K HDR OLED display with 100% coverage of DCI-P3, a 4000mAh battery with Qi wireless charging support, and an IP65/68 water and dust resistance rating.

To learn more about this phone, head over to the Sony website. No word on exact release date, but Sony says the phone will be available in the U.S. market “in 2020” and is compatible with Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Cricket and MetroPCS.

(via PopPhoto)